CEO of the Year Awards 2023

SME News- CEO of the Year Awards 2023 | 18 Hospitality Consulting CEO of the Year - UK Based in Berkshire, Truffle Hunting Ltd. is a consulting firm that serves organisations within the hospitality industry, supporting them in their journeys to success. At the helm of the company is Founder and CEO Nigel Sutcliffe, a dedicated professional with unrivalled experience developing restaurants and other hospitality establishments. Here, we speak to him to find out more about his work. With a team of restauranteurs and consultants who have launched over 30 restaurants throughout their careers, Truffle Hunting is proud to help new and existing hospitality brands to achieve success. The company operates within several key areas of hospitality, assisting clients that range from coffee houses to pubs and restaurants to hotels and even theatres. These establishments tend to either be preparing for an initial launch or looking to evolve from good to great. Working with such a broad range of businesses, Truffle Hunting understands that every client is unique and that their needs, areas of focus, and ambitions will vary. For this reason, the consultancy first strives to understand their strengths and weaknesses, using this information to create a roadmap to success and direct the changes that need to be made. “We really listen. We take time with new clients to fully understand what it is they want, then we introduce tools that we have created over the years and which we know to deliver great results,” Nigel comments. “Following our initial meetings, we not only outline the overall objective, but also seek to understand their mutual ambitions. This helps bring together a united team which can then focus on the critical path to opening or change.” Truffle Hunting sets itself apart from other consultancies through its proactive approach. Committed to making things happen, the business does not just offer criticism and expect the client to solve their problems on their own. Nigel explains, “We take ownership, assuming overall responsibility for everything. We want our clients to feel as though we are an integrated part of their own team.” Having embarked on a successful career in the hospitality industry, Nigel established Truffle Hunting in 2001, a venture that has led him to support several successful organisations over the years. These include The Fat Duck, Dinner by Heston, The Perfectionists’ Café, The Oarsman, The Crown, The Mutton at Hazeley Heath, Gara Rock, and many more. At the helm of Truffle Hunting, Nigel has always strived to keep people at the heart of the business, therefore fostering a caring internal culture that is centred around coaching and mentoring, communication, empathy, and taking care of the planet. Every team member has a voice and should not be afraid to use it, no matter their role. “Our staff are everything; without them we’d be nothing,” Nigel shares. “I’m so overwhelmingly lucky to have a team that are part of building some of the most interesting restaurants in the country. Our primary value is teamwork, which demonstrates that we really are a people-first business.” Throughout his time at Truffle Hunting, Nigel has learnt from his experiences and leveraged the knowledge he has gained to grow and evolve as a leader. For example, when working for the Royal Shakespeare Company, he observed that there is often a struggle to manage multiple opinions when there are several stakeholders involved in a business, even when there is a clear objective. He found that, in order to resolve this conflict and bring stakeholders together, it is important for leaders to be able to justify why particular actions are being taken. This is a discovery that has shaped Nigel’s approach to leadership and made him who he is today. As Truffle Hunting now enters its 23rd year of operation, Nigel is a strong leader with an impressive track record for hospitality consultancy, having helped transform countless businesses into success stories. For his outstanding work, he has been awarded the title of Hospitality Consulting CEO of the Year, UK, in the CEO of the Year Awards 2023. Moving forwards, Nigel and his team have several exciting opportunities in the pipeline and are hoping to soon further expand their office. Contact: Nigel Sutcliffe Company: Truffle Hunting Web Address: